No matter what your business or venture, I’d hazard that when you first set up your YouTube channel your mind was abuzz with ideas of how best to grip your captive audience and attract new viewers like bees to a honeypot. Unfortunately, as natural as this is, so is the subsequent uploader’s block. How can I come up with something new that doesn’t seem stale or like a copy of someone else’s channel? These are common doubts and sometimes all that is needed is to take a step back and return to basics. What is your main point of difference? What is the ethos of your business? What makes your products and services different? What unites your customer base? Once such ponderings has helped ignite a spark then you can look to these tips to flesh out your ideas and give them a little je ne sais quoi.
- Integrate current trends and news
There’s nothing like picking up on a viral piece of news or entertainment fodder and owning it to make your viewers feel like you are living on the same planet and engaged with the same concerns as them. Many major companies are using current breaking news items as an excuse for a cheeky tweet (Ben & Jerry’s being one of the most renowned), so why not do the same for a YouTube video. Making a few clever references to current affairs can make the difference between a watch and a ‘meh’ and a watch and a share!
- Spend some time on relevant forums
As with any content it pays to do the research to find out what the concerns of your target audience really are. What questions do they want answering? By lurking or interacting (undercover) on some forums you can get a sense of hot topics and begin to formulate an idea of what needs to be addressed – perhaps in the form of an instructional video.
- Search for hashtags on Twitter
Another way of ensuring that your next video is relevant and current, a bit of time spent doing this could reap social media rewards.
- Reaction / unboxing videos can work wonders
Videos of unboxing a new product and laying out the contents to show what customers can expect and showing the reaction as a customer unboxes their purchase can be a great way of getting interest in a video.
- Read the news about your field
Spend some time reading online journals and blogs to find out about forthcoming and present developments in the field. You may get some ideas for your business as well as some tips for video ideas.
- Get feedback from your subscribers
A much overlooked weapon in the YouTuber’s armoury is to ask viewers what they would like to see. You can even link it to likes on pre-existing videos. For instance – “…if this video reaches 500 likes we will do a video on…”
- Sift through your comments
Sometimes some of your best ideas are staring you in the face, if only you take the time to look. Checking out comments on your existing videos is a great idea.
- Develop a unique tone – don’t make it too formal
Forging a YouTube identity is key to keeping and attracting subscribers. Over time, if there is no discernible ‘voice’ to your channel then people will lose interest. Keep it fresh, honest, casual and confident.
- Title your video appropriately
When it comes to titling your video you can use Google’s autocomplete function to narrow down your title to make it SEO friendly and more likely to generate hits. Similarly, YouTube’s own autocomplete function is worth using.
- It’s all in the description
The first few lines of a video description are vital in generating traffic as it determines your rank in the search engine results. Make sure your descriptions are on point!